Stakes high on race gear
By SAMANTHA TURNBULL
MAT THOMPSON hasn't put on a tie since high school.
But the Ballina 19-year-old is willing to re-learn the Windsor knot for tomorrow's Ballina Cup.
"It's a good excuse to dress up," he said.
"Girls get to dress up all the time. Why can't we do it too?"
Mat and two of his friends have hired suits in red, yellow and purple from Wallace & Co Menswear in Ballina for the big day.
He said he hadn't picked which colour he'll be wearing yet.
But whichever he chooses it will be because he wants to stand out.
"I'm not too worried because there's nothing I wouldn't wear," he said.
"'Anything goes' is how I'd describe my style."
Wallace & Co acting manager Ian Patterson said men were becoming increasingly keen to dress up for the races.
He said the most popular outfits he had sold over the past few weeks were pinstriped suits.
"Pinstripes and bone-coloured suits are definitely in," he said.
"Chocolate and black have always been popular, but the brightly-coloured suits like Mat's are also in this year.
"Ties with big patterns on them are also selling well."
Mr Patterson said there were no strict fashion rules men should follow for the races, but he did offer a few tips.
"Short-sleeved shirts, shorts and anything too summery is out at the moment," he said.
"Pale blue and frills aren't really in either ... oh, and ties with cartoon characters on them are definitely out!"
n See tomorrow's Northern Star for your Ballina Cup four-page liftout.